Crystal Cove SMCA

Marine Protected Areas

  • Note: This course can be played via Flash or HTML5. If you would like to play the Flash version and don't currently have Flash installed, download the Flash Player here.


These modules, developed by California State Parks and California Department of Fish and Wildlife, teach students about what MPAs are, why they were created, and how they are being monitored for progress. The modules align with both Common Core State Standards and the Next Generation Science Standards. They are written at a 5th grade level, but are easily adaptable for students in grade 3-7. Start with the introduction module titled "Dive In." Next choose the Crystal Cove modules. Finish with the conclusion module titled "Resurface." Students may work independently, in groups, or led by the teacher.

Dive In

MPAs were created with six main goals in mind. This module will introduce students to some of those goals and explain why ocean habitats and habitat communities are important resources that humans should protect and sustain.

Crystal Cove SMCA

Crystal Cove SMCA is located in Southern California. In this module students will explore the idea of monitoring habitats with indicator species, and they will get to know the organisms that live in the area.


Students will reflect on their learning about MPAs by interpreting MPA data and reviewing main points through a series of interactive videos.

For more information, questions or if you require special accommodations to access this
content, please contact the Interpretation and Education Division at
or (916) 654-2249.